Monday, August 17, 2015

Love, Marriage & Health Insurance: Pick Two

Way back in Aught Eight, Bob blogged on an interesting (new?) trend:

"[A] poll conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, a leading health policy research group, found that in the past year 7 percent of U.S. adults married so one or the other could get on a partner's health insurance plan."

Five years later, in the age of The ObamaTax, that boat began taking on water:

"By denying coverage to spouses, employers not only save the annual premiums, but also the new fees ... This year, companies have to pay $1 or $2 “per life” covered on their plans, a sum that jumps to $65 in 2014"

And now, the ship is sinking fast:

"[N]early half of large employers say if they don’t take additional measures to control costs, at least one of their health plans will reach the threshold that triggers the “Cadillac” excise tax"

And what measures might those be, you may be wondering?


"More than one in three employers (34%) will implement surcharges for spouses who can obtain coverage through their own employer, an increase from 29% this year. A handful of employers will exclude spouses altogether when other coverage is available through an employer"

Thus opening up a whole 'nuther can of worms: for one thing, who covers the kids? For another, one of the benefits of a "family" plan is that a family's maximum out-of-pocket exposure is limited to (usually) 2 or 3 times the individual. This can be a tremendous benefit for a medium-to-large family, and which would be severely impacted by splitting it up.

But hey, if you like your plan....

[Hat Tip: Moe Lane @ RedState]
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